Big Pine Creek Stream Report

Some parts of central and south-central Pennsylvania got a lot of rain from Sunday evening, May 13th through yesterday, May 15th. However the north central and western north-central part of the state did not get as much rain, since this recent rain was mostly a southwest to north east moving system. For anyone who thought of making a weekend fishing trip to the Little Juniata or Penn’s Creek, those streams are going to be running pretty high, as in get your kayak and life vests out and leave the rods at home.

In fact, as an edit to this post just a half hour after I made it; I just checked flow data on Penn’s Creek. Here are the current flow stats:

Penn’s Creek spiked yesterday at almost 3000 cfs, and is currently running at 2000 cfs. No fishin’ there boys and girls. Maybe in a week, considering the mean flow on Penn’s Creek for May 16th is 619 cfs. The Green Drakes had started last week on Penn’s Creek at Glen Iron, but now all bets are off.

Except Big Pine Creek. The Green Drakes are starting there, and there’s over 50 miles of water from Waterville to Ansonia in some of the most beautiful scenery in the entire state of Pennsylvania. That is in  comparison to the ten miles that usually hosts the hundreds of anglers for the Drake Hatch on Penn’s Creek, where it can get so crowded you need a shoe horn to squeeze yourself into a fishing spot.

Even Spring Creek is running high – up and quite off color now, but that settles down in 12-18 hours; however…

There is some good news if you still want to fish! Here is the stream report by the Slate Run Tackle Shop for May 15-2012:

05-15-2012:  Pine is in great shape at this time. We missed most of the rain that went through in this last couple of days.  They are still predicting some thunder storms tomorrow. If we survive them, we are on our way to a great weekend of flies and fish. The size #14 olive has started to hatch, along with Gray Foxes, Sulphurs, Slate Drakes and a few Green Drakes. This next week will probably provide fishing to most of the Drakes. Luckily we only received .65 of and inch of rain in the last 11/2 days. Clarity is good. Level is above average, but very fishable.

Added by me:

Kettle Creek, Sinnemahoning, Young Woman’s Creek, Slate Run, Cedar Run, Little Pine Creek – there is fishing NOW and there will be (most likely) good fishing through this weekend, since the weather will be clear for the next several days. I’m fishing tomorrow…but then I have to work the weekend cutting firewood at the cabin, but looks like Sunday may be an all-day sucker for me as far as fishing goes…I’m now planning to be on Big Pine Creek…anyone care to join me? :mrgreen:

On Big Pine Creek – #12 cornuta BWO’s in the morning, Slate Drakes, Green Drakes, sulphurs – a mixed bag – there should be good dry fly fishing. It doesn’t get much better than that. 🙂

Check the Slate Run Tackle Shop link for more info:

Thankfully Pennsylvania has a lot of good fishing! I decided to add a couple photos to this post:

An angler plays a trout in the Delayed Harvest Section of Big Pine Creek near Slate Run, Pennsylvania. The March Brown hatch on Pine Creek this year was the best since the 1970’s. Exceptional dry fly fishing on Big Pine Creek this season. Photo taken April 26th – Don Bastian.

Big Pine Creek, below the village of Waterville.

The gloom of late afternoon on Big Pine Creek. Don Bastian photo, April 26. This is a big beautiful valley, and when conditions are right, can provide great fishing. Conditions are currently right.

8 comments on “Big Pine Creek Stream Report

  1. mike says:

    Was on the Pine last Sat., Grey Foxes everywhere, seen about a dozen drakes come off headin’ back up this Sat.

    • Don Bastian says:

      Hi Mike;
      Thank you for your comment! I did very well there yesterday, my best-ever day on Big Pine, and the first time since 2006 that I fished it all day. Slate Drakes came off heavy Thursday evening. They hatched by the score during the day from about 11 AM – 2 PM, but there were on by the hundreds in the evening. The fish were on ’em, though spotty and seemed to cruise as they fed, so hard to dial ’em in for precise casting to a riser until you got a take. I hooked, netted and photographed two beautiful browns on drys; 18″ and 19″, and hooked and lost a third big trout. Photos and info on the day coming to a blog near you! That would be this one, 😉
      Appreciate your comment, thanks again! Tight lines…I’ll be there all day this Sunday.

      • mike says:

        Fished it on sat 5/19 Don. About 2 miles above Slate Run. It was kinda slow during the day with the bright sun but as evening came on there was just an unbelievable amount of bugs. Grey foxes, sulfurs, BWO’s, slate drakes, brown drakes, green drakes. At 9 pm there were just too many bugs on the water with the coffin flies yet to come. I managed to fool some fish, see a huge bear and witness some unbelievable hatches.

      • Don Bastian says:

        Hi Mike;
        Thanks for your comment! I arrived Sunday morning on the 20th to fish Big Pine Creek, and the trout really spanked me. Mostly because when I found out what they were feeding on – Brown Drake Spinners – I had none. I gave away my Slate Drake Spinners on Thursday to the two guys I was fishing with, they might have worked…size a little small, and color, well if the trout didn’t like the absence of the yellowish rib and underside, it just would have been more frustration. That was the first time I ever encountered that in 48 years fly fishing. I learned from it though, Monday morning at the cabin, I developed a two-tone extended body for a Brown Drake Spinner that I am pretty certain will do the business next time. I have to finish the pattern…by then the elusive Brown Drake Hatch hatch will be over. Thanks again for your comment and for sharing your fishing report! Appreciate it!

  2. I’ve haven’t fished the Big Pine in a dog’s age. After reading your post I want to head out, possible road. I remember the Green Drake hatch to be spectacular. The only place a Bald Eagle took the fish I was casting to during the Drake hatch.

    • Don Bastian says:

      Hi Lou;
      Thanks for your comment! Hey, if you and Bart can get over here for a couple days and I’m around, we’ll hitch up and do some fishing up there together. As close as I live to Big Pine I don’t fish it enough either. With the mild weather this winter, and more or less stable rains this spring, the creek has been more accessible thus far than normal, and the fishing has been exceptional, especially the dry fly fishing. Glad you enjoyed the post!

  3. Brianna says:

    That was a lovely read Don, the pics are lovely. Thank you for sharing them.

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